Genoa, Giraglia Rolex Cup 2017 Joyous Celebration concludes the Giraglia Rolex Cup

Sunday, 18 June 2017

 The final prize giving ceremony at the 2017 Giraglia Rolex Cup, organised by the Yacht Club Italiano in collaboration the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez and sponsored by Rolex, saw the Maxi 72 Momo win line honours, the J109 Chestress win the prize for best placed boat across all three events that ccomprised the GRC and  the TP52 Freccia Rossa win the Rolex Challenge Trophy for best placed yacht overall in IRC Class. 

The joyous, bi-lingual ceremony reflected the roots of this top yachting event, born as a post war collaboration between Italy and France. Gian Riccardo Marini of Rolex lauded the unique atmosphere of friendly competition that reigns at the Giraglia Rolex Cup and thanked the Yacht Club Italiano and the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez for the key roles they play in organising this event. Special thanks also went to BMW for all the help and support they have offered.

Vadim Yakimenk owner of the TP52  Freccia Rossa that won the Rolex Challenge Trophy and the Marco Paleari Special Prize spoke on the event. “I think that there are five must-do sailing events per year and the Giraglia Rolex Cup is always one of them. It’s becoming famous in Russia and it’s a dream to participate in it: there are always lots of boats, crews from all over the world. It’s full of positive emotion and also challenging. When we saw the weather forecast we chose to sail the shortest possible course and that was the strategy that got us the result. We did a great job and I’m proud of the whole crew. We were a mixed pro and amateur crew, lots of my Russian friends and a few French pros for a total of 13 aboard. The Yacht Club Italiano’s preparation on the water was excellent as was the Rolex social program. As lots of the friends I sail with are businessmen and share my competitive spirit, it takes a sporting event like this one to give us the goal to get together and have some fun. Because in the end, more than the prizes it’s about enjoying the beautiful feeling of being in a sphere made of just air, water and man.”

World-class sailor Mauro Pelaschier sailed his umpteenth Giraglia Rolex Cup aboard Namib, a 12m Bermuda sloop purpose-built in 1966 for the Giraglia that was also honoured with the Yacht Club de France award for the yacht that best tells an inspiring story of the sea: “The original owner built this boat because he wanted a small, fast yacht for racing in the Giraglia Rolex Cup. After the first race he realised that all he had built was a small boat so he sold it in disgust. Here we are 50 years later, for us it has been a pleasure to sail aboard this beautifully restored jewel. Every Giraglia Rolex Cup that I have done except one has been long and slow and you always have to be careful of wind holes near the Giraglia rock and coming into Genoa. This year I’d say was exceptionally slow, but here we are, we finished. Don’t ask me how long it took us though,” he adds with a chuckle.


The Giraglia Rolex Cup was created in 1953 as a 241nm offshore challenge. 2017 marks the 65th edition of this 241nm Mediterranean classic that has grown to include feeder races from Sanremo and Marseille, inshore races in the Bay of Saint-Tropez and the famous offshore race from St Tropez to Genoa. The GRC is organised by the Yacht Club Italiano and the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez, with support from the Yacht Club Sanremo, the Yacht Club de France, and the Cercle Nautique et Touristique du Lacydon. The Giraglia Rolex Cup has been partnered by Rolex since 1998


Founded in Genoa in 1879, the Yacht Club Italiano is the oldest yacht club in the Med. With its main clubhouse in Porticciolo Duca degli Abruzzi in Genoa, YCI has the primary objective of spreading yachting culture. The Rolex Capri Sailing Week, the Giraglia Rolex Cup and the Rolex MBA’s Conference and Regatta are just a few of the international regattas that characterise the YCI’s present and show the way towards its future of fun and friendly sportsmanship on the water.

Clare Mahon          
+39 348 4943675  

Giles Pearman   

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Last Updated ( Sunday, 18 June 2017 )